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Cleary frustrated with lack of rhythm in Panthers defeat

Press Conference: NRL Round 11

Wests Tigers Coach Ivan Cleary said while his side defended admirably, a lack of rhythm in attack was the cause for their 16-2 defeat to the Penrith Panthers.

In a game punctuated by penalties and sin-bins, Cleary said his side weren't able to build any pressure on the Panthers line and found themselves out of the game as a result of the home side's momentum — something which will need improving on heading in to next Sunday's clash with the Bulldogs.

"I didn't think our kicking game was great," Cleary said.

"It was sort of a game where we didn't find any rhythm in our attack at all.

"We started okay, but the rush of penalties didn't allow us to find our rhythm, and after that it was their line speed that did the same thing. 

"We got to half-time and just hadn't found any rhythm and we just spent the whole second half defending.

"They just had the whole run of play and we were under the pump that whole second half."

Wests Tigers co-captain Russell Packer enthused Cleary's sentiments, pointing to early errors in the match as pivotal in letting the home side off the hook and in to the contest despite being a man short.

"It was a tough game," Packer reflected.

"I thought we started pretty well and had a lot of ball on their goal-line. When Trent Merrin got sent to the sin bin we made a mistake and they just seized all the momentum from there.

"They definitely deserved to win tonight, they have a very good team and we weren't good enough."

Despite losing four of their last five games, Cleary was adamant that the losses were all different in nature and not pointing to a bigger problem — meaning the focus was simply on turning it around next week.

"They were too good; they're not the same," he said of the side's recent run of from.

"I don't think too many teams are going to get points here [at Penrith].

"Next game's a different game and that's all we can focus on."

See what Coach Ivan Cleary and co-captain Russell Packer had to say about the game above!

Acknowledgement of Country

Wests Tigers respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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